After receiving the wrath of conservative reactionaries earlier in the quarter over distributing LGBT merchandise for kids, Target revealed Wednesday that it was decreasing its sales and profit estimates for the remainder of the year.
The results report revealed that Target’s quarterly sales dropped for the first time in six years, prompting the company to reduce its sales and profit projections for the remainder of the year.
In May, the firm unveiled a Pride Month collection that featured LGBT products aimed at children, prompting an outcry from conservatives.
In the earnings release, Target’s chair and CEO, Brian Cornell, stated, “We continue to take a cautious approach to developing our business and have reduced our financial projection in expectation of prolonged near-term difficulties on the topline.”
He said this method, together with the strategic and financial investments they’ve made throughout time, has put them in a position to generate long-term success.
That is until they needlessly step on a rake.
Christina Hennington, Target’s chief growth officer, stated the high response to this year’s pride assortment was only one of the several obstacles that were relatively minor.
After receiving initial criticism and reports of threats, Target decided to remove some of the LGBT-themed merchandise from shelves. Before the reaction, the firm had over two thousand items in its Pride Month collection, including books, home furnishings, and clothes for children and adults.
However, the vice president and director of investor relations claims the Target downturn is due to theft, not boycotts.
(Dick’s Sporting Goods has made the same claim. Many say the downturn is due to their stance on gun control.)
“Our team continues to encounter an intolerable quantity of retail theft and organized retail crime,” said John Hulbert during the results conference call.
According to the results report, the retailer’s stock after the second quarter was 17% lower year over year, owing to a 25% decrease in discretionary categories. The corporation reported a total revenue of $24.8 billion for the quarter, down 4.9% year over year.
In early August, shareholders filed a complaint against the firm and its board of directors via America First Legal, alleging that the corporation had misled investors, costing them billions of dollars. The action claims that Target’s initiatives on diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as environmental, social, and governance, are harmful to shareholders and fail to account for historical patterns of conservative pushback.